Monday, July 11, 2005

Socially inept

Sunday we went to a birthday party for one of the kids in Isaac's pre-school class. To be honest, I almost declined the invitation for no reason other than I hate going to those things. The mother invited Vivian, too, because her girls love babies, so the four of us went. And it was fine. But, not really fun. Do other people enjoy these things? I mean, I made small talk with the other moms and dads, but I actually find that difficult to do since as soon as I find something worthy of discussing I've got to run off and rescue Vivian from some demonic toddler, or play diplomat in a war of toys between Isaac and some other kid. And how boring is it to watch toddlers playing toddler games and singing songs? The whole time we were there, I kept thinking--get me out of here!

Then again, I have that feeling--that desperate to escape feeling--often when I am in social situations. I assume most people don't. Not that I have some kind of social disorder or something, but in a new social situation--say, a party where I don't know many people-- I am often counting the minutes until I can leave. Makes it difficult to make friends. I do enjoy myself in smaller crowds--at a barbecue with people I know relatively well for example. Actually, at most small evening (read: where alcohol is served) gatherings I do well, and even have fun. But during the day, without someone I know well, I generally suck. I can't think of things to say, I don't know how to initiate a conversation, or jump into one that is already happening. Even if I manage to make small talk, I feel like what I'm saying is hideously boring to the other person, or I soon run out of things to say and we just stand there in awkward silence until someone else comes to rescue us.

So, generally, I avoid those situations. Fortunately for me, my husband is a pretty social guy and has lots of friends, whom I have gotten to know well over the years. He usually insists we attend these gatherings, and I do better with him around. Though god forbid he leave my side to get a drink or something. (That sounds SO LAME I can't believe I'm not going to delete it.)

But this was about a birthday party. Do you enjoy them? Or are all the parents standing there wishing to god the cake would be served so we all could go home?

No comments: